crafts, hobby, Home and Garden, home gifts, Montana, quilting tools

Setting Up My Space: Part 2

Sewing table
Sewing table in front of the window

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you set yourself a goal and at the end of the week you realize you didn’t quite make that goal? That is where I am right now. Granted I technically have one more day to this week, and with that in mind, I may reach my goal after all. But I don’t feel too bad. In thinking about Part 2 of Setting Up My Space, I spent two days reorganizing and cleaning my sewing/quilting/office room. I even tackled my little closet space and made room for some things that were cluttering up my room. Don’t worry, everything isn’t going to fall out if you open the door. It doesn’t even have a door! I did find an unused curtain and managed to hang it up in lieu of a door! Now instead of a gaping hole I have a pretty curtain to look at when I am pressing blocks.

I like to be organized as much as possible. Some times when you have limited means, like most people, you have to improvise. Think outside of the box. Go with something different yet functional in a way that will work for you. Hmmm, I think you get my meaning.

WIP/Design board
My Design/WIP board

My “design” board which is really my WIP board is made from cork boards. I bought them at Walmart. I use it primarily to hang up my little pieces to 1) keep them organized 2) keep them out of the way and 3) makes it easier to find them as I follow a pattern. I also tag each stack with a little post-it. Each stack of pieces has the corresponding letter or number assigned to it from the pattern. Eventually I will put up a different design board but for now it works for me. Oh, I bought the white clamps from Walmart as well.

Space being limited on the floor and walls I had to think of where I would put my thread, rulers and cutting mats. On the wall behind the door my husband, Wes took two white shelf units and put them together to make a place for me to store my thread. On the top of the shelf I put some of my favorite birthday cards from my best friend, Mary. There is also a very old oil can. On the bottom of the shelves there are knobs where I can hang things, like a Mother’s day gift I received from my grandchildren.

White shelves
Re-purposed White Shelves with baskets

I took small white baskets and put them in the cubbyholes. Under each basket is a label denoting what thread colors are in each basket. Now I can find what I am looking for and see what colors I need.

These shelves were going to be thrown away. I feel pretty good that we were able to re-purpose them and find a home for my thread.

If you have ever cut 12 inch squares you know how difficult it is to keep them square just using your 6.5×24.5 inch ruler. That’s why companies like Omnigrid and Creative Grids make the big boys. I have a few of those big boys. They are hanging on my walls. I also have my smaller rulers hanging on my file cabinet. My 6.5×24.5 inch ruler stays on the cutting table. I have a handle attached to it so it makes it a bit awkward to hang. The big rulers are heavy so I used a screw instead of a nail. It made things a bit more secure.

Well that just about covers how I set up my space. The only thing left is my sewing table. My original sewing table was accidentally destroyed when it was being moved. Not any one’s fault, really. It was something I had put together from a kit. My husband felt bad though and bought me another sewing table. Nothing expensive. It came from a second-hand place. It has one large drawer and that’s fine. I keep my book about my sewing machine in the drawer with a few other items. I did however need the well to be modified in order for my sewing machine to fit. So Wes did a wonderful job of doing that. It involved saws and other sharp objects. I’m not very good with those things. The large extension does need to be propped up because the hinges are giving a bit and when I have a lap quilt on it, it will sag under the weight. But other than that it does what I need it to, hold my machine.

Now you know how I did it. Now it’s your turn! Go set up your quilting area, get organized and get quilting! I would love to hear how your space is set up! So send me an email and pictures if you have them to, I’ll be sure to post them in a blog. How fun it will be to see what other people have done with their space!

Until next time – Are you organized?

crafts, hobby, Home and Garden, home gifts, Montana, quilting tools

Kits Please!

Trivet Set
Trivet Set designed by Ann Johnson

I really like kits. They can be so much fun because they basically take all of the guess work out of whatever little or big project you decide to do. Some times you only need to purchase backing and batting for your kit project.

This particular kit I want to talk about is just one of the fun ones I purchased from Connecting Threads some time ago. I kept it for something to do between any big projects. Sometimes I just need to do something little and simple.

This kit came with great instructions, all of the fabric I would need except for backing, and batting. I bought coordinating fabric for the backing from the Grace collection by Heritage Classics on Connecting Threads. Unfortunately I don’t believe you can purchase from that collection any more. It also required Insul-Bright batting and regular batting.

This would have probably been a one day project but I took my time and did it in two. Cutting out all of the pieces probably took the longest, like usual. (I am going to get one of those Go Cutter systems from AccuQuilt. Just thinking about how much time I would save in cutting pieces and the wear and tear on my wrist makes it worth it!)

One of the great things about this trivet kit is there are four sizes, and two of each size. That gave some diversity in how they looked. It probably would be all right if they were all the same, but I like how they were all different. Another thing is I can reuse this pattern with different fabric. They would make a nice home-warming gift.

Mine are sitting in a little basket on the kitchen counter. I have a terrible habit of placing a hot pot on the counter without nothing under the pot. My husband informed me that the heat could cause the glue to separate from the counter top and cause problems. Or something like that. I took it to mean, Don’t Put Hot Pots and Pans Directly On The Counter. Hence, trivets. He really is patient with me. What can I say, he married a nutty red-head.

I have a few kits left in my stash. And of course, I have the patterns in my pattern book. So no matter what, I can always make neat trivets, placemats, and mug rugs, hobo bags, well, you get the idea.

Thanks for coming by and sharing a little of your time with me.

Until next time – Got Kits?